Eneco and Co-Op Energy’s Highland wind farm partnership provides consumer choice to Big Six providers

Choice is a good thing. As the lifeblood of free market economics, it underpins the principle of fair and affordable pricing for the consumer.

In energy utility markets, choice can also create capacity for ethically and environmentally sound yet still profitable business propositions. These measures are not mutually exclusive.

Equally vital, it promotes efficient resourcing for competitive suppliers while driving a healthy thirst for technical innovation that can be legitimately marketed as an improvement; a differentiator with visible and multiple positive impacts.

When effectively managed for communities and businesses large and small, such propositions increase customer engagement and trust. Virtuous circle complete; scalable sustainability secured.

Of course it’s not that simple in practice. It takes strategic focus and long, meaningful communication with communities if you want to establish onshore wind generation assets.

As leader of a proud market disruptor, I believe it’s a question of being lean but adequately resourced, adopting and deploying location-optimised technology as sensitively as possible to create workable financial gearing.

Wind power can be cheaper – we’ve proved it. But what we are working on is the cost down carrot coupled to consumer appetite. Better understanding of the full value chain, across consumer purchasing and performance demands, grid connectivity and regulatory obligation, is implicit.

Increasingly there are examples of successful headway in breaking the hitherto accepted status quo in availability of UK energy suppliers, a market dominated by the ‘Big Six’. 

Eneco UK is part of Eneco Group, the Dutch-headquartered sustainable energy generator. The UK business is one of a new breed. In Scotland we operate three wind farms in the Highlands and two in Aberdeenshire.

Based in Warwick, we have an additional office at Dochfour near Inverness, close to our Scottish generating locations and working as an integral contributor to local life. It isn’t a veneer of ‘localness’ or simply a logistics expedient.

I’m not being commercially partial when discussing how we are changing perceptions of emerging responsible, well-founded alternative renewable energy generators and suppliers…

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